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Transitioning into a new management contract is always a huge step for an HOA. Communities need a manager who can ensure that the switchover is seamless, so the board doesn’t fall behind on association business and the membership experiences a smooth transition.
General Manager Marty Ignacio is exactly the type of person who can handle that type of heavy lifting. As onsite general manager of Auberge, a sub-association of the master planned community Del Sur in San Diego for active adults age 55 and up, Marty jumped into the role with gusto and hit the ground running.
“His enthusiasm is contagious,” says Christine Rodgers, Keystone’s VP of Large-Scale Community Management. “In a short period of time, Marty embraced the challenges of two new roles – that as a Keystone team member and as the general manager for a new Keystone client. From the beginning, he became fully engaged in his commitment to Keystone’s core values and to Auberge.”
It’s not surprising. Marty came into the position with ten years of experience handling property management in San Diego, so he knows his way around the challenges of onsite community management.
With 206 units that are home to 400+ residents, Auberge is an upscale gated community that features plenty of amenities for active seniors, including a clubhouse, pickleball courts, pools and a spa. The association was looking for a higher level of customer service and Marty knew exactly what it would take to provide it.
He explains, “Change is always hard for any group and homeowners associations are no different. By tapping into soft skills that I’ve developed over my career, I can help soften the transition. For example, I know that homeowners will have lots of questions, especially as an engagement kicks off. I maintain an ‘open-door policy,’ so homeowners and board members feel free to approach me with any questions at any time. Communication is crucial for a happy association, which is why I treat all requests, no matter how minor, with my full attention.”
Attention to detail is one of Marty’s strong suits, in more ways than one. After hours, he’s a personal trainer. “I take the same approach to training as I do to in my job as a manager. I ask myself: ‘How can I make a difference in someone’s day?’ I genuinely like to help others — whether it’s supporting an HOA board or motivating someone to do that extra squat or lunge.”
In addition to impressive credentials like achieving a Certified Manager of Community Associations (CMCA) credential with the Community Association Managers International Certification Board (CAMICB) and Association Management Specialist (AMS) from Community Associations Institute (CAI), Marty earned his MBA in Managerial Leadership from the University of San Diego. It’s a degree he completed in one year – while he was working full time providing community management to San Diego HOAs.
When it came time to advance his career, Marty was attracted to Keystone because he felt that the company culture and values parallel his own. “I love the structure at Keystone – no one ever gets lost in the woodwork. My supervisor constantly touches base with me and if I need to reach out, she’s always available. Knowing that she has my back makes me want to do everything even better. Not to prove myself, but to never let the team down.”
Marty recognizes that onsite management is a bit of a different animal than portfolio management. While the basic dedication to customer service remains the same, anyone considering the position should keep a few things in mind. He explains, “First, you must have a genuine commitment to the community. Residents will see you every day and they’ll know if your heart isn’t in it. Patience, while always important, is particularly important for onsite communities. You’re there to protect their property values and improve their lives; therefore, your service level must deliver. Finally, you need to be a generalist in all regards. When you’re onsite and you see the community every day, it’s imperative that you can take care of issues on the spot. It’s hard work, but the result is that you’ll walk out of the office every day knowing you did everything in your power to help the community succeed. There’s a major satisfaction that comes with giving it your all.”
Marty brings passion and energy to both the team at Keystone and the residents of Auberge as he strives to fulfill our mission of “improving the lives of others beyond their expectation.” Tapping into his experience, commitment and positive attitude has strengthened the team at Keystone, along with the communities we serve. Thanks for a job well done, Marty!
Considering a career in community management? Browse open positions here at Keystone.